Halstead comments on New research on effective climate charities - Effective Altruism Forum

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Comment author: Halstead 16 July 2018 02:55:23PM 3 points [-]

For future reference, in the interests of full disclosure I think it would be worth mentioning when you recommend a charity that you volunteer for it

Comment author: EmilyC 31 August 2018 08:15:41AM 0 points [-]

I've been volunteering for climate change for over a decade now, and after thoroughly researching the topic, have finally settled on Citizens' Climate Lobby as the best approach to solving the problem. Based on what I've seen, if we could get ~250 active volunteer constituents in at least 2/3rds of Congressional districts, we could pass Carbon Fee & Dividend. There is actually a majority in support now in each Congressional district (http://climatecommunication.yale.edu/visualizations-data/ycom-us-2018/) and each political party (http://climatecommunication.yale.edu/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/Global-Warming-Policy-Politics-March-2018.pdf) for a revenue-neutral carbon tax. More than 2/3rds of Republicans are actually receptive (https://community.citizensclimatelobby.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/11/june-2017-meeting-analysis-1127.pdf), and that's despite the fact that the typical Republican district has just over ~50 active volunteers (though as many as 283 and as few as 2). We probably only need an additional 45k volunteers in targeted districts, and that's on the conservative side, as it could take even fewer.

Lobbying works (https://sociology.stanford.edu/sites/default/files/publications/friends_or_foes-how_social_movement_allies_affect_the_passage_of_legislation_in_the_u._s._congress.pdf), and public opinion matters (https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/09644016.2016.1116651). The biggest barrier is probably that people tend to underestimate how popular these policies are (https://earth.stanford.edu/news/public-support-climate-policy-remains-strong) and that prevents them from taking action.

Comment author: BreeneMurphy 18 July 2018 12:51:48PM 0 points [-]

Will do. Sorry about that.

Interesting news on Republicans and climate change: https://www.eenews.net/stories/1060089315

Comment author: LHarrison 22 July 2018 03:48:54PM 0 points [-]

I think that a focus on partisan politics, and one that especially tries to narrow its scope to Republicans, suffers from lacking a firm framework of how this is supposed to create a specific outcome. One individual Republican representing a heavily Democratic district on the front lines of sea level rise discussing a carbon tax, with almost no real support from the rest of his caucus, is an aberration.

Across the board, Republican politicians oppose carbon taxes, the House took such a vote this week and the efforts by CCL to provide cover to the Republicans in the Climate Solutions Caucus who voted for a resolution opposing carbon taxes seems like the very definition of ineffective.

If there's a case for engagement in the political process around climate change, it's looking at the risks of climate change and determining the most effective strategies to adapt to them. For example, perhaps a certain degree of sea level rise is baked into the cake and an effective policy response is reducing exposure of properties to this risk. So coastal resiliency and flood insurance reform would make sense. However while some of the values of properties and communities involved in, say, significant flooding in Miami may be high, I don't know if it's that significant in any sort of global sense.

Comment author: EmilyC 31 August 2018 04:41:31PM 0 points [-]

It's not really narrowing its scope to Republicans. It's a non-partisan organization with a policy that has bipartisan support. It's just been especially important to talk about Republican support since Republicans have been largely denying climate change up until very recently.

A carbon tax is required to solve climate change (http://news.mit.edu/2016/carbon-tax-stop-using-fossil-fuels-0224) and only government has the power to levy a tax.